In conversation with Sun party

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By Peter Mothiba

Sizwe Ummah National leader Rasheed Gutta
Sizwe Ummah National leader Rasheed Gutta

Rasheed Gutta is the Premier candidate of Sizwe Ummah Nation for the forthcoming general elections on 29 May 2024.

Tshwane Talks conducted a quick Q and A interview with Rasheed Gutta this week to find out what it is that he really stands for as regards South African politics.

Rasheed Ebrahim Gutta is a distinguished South African businessman and a dedicated family man.

Born in Mafikeng, he pursued higher education at the University of Witwatersrand, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce.

With over 25 years of business experience, particularly in understanding China’s economic expansion, Rasheed has developed an acute sense of global and local economic dynamics.

He currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Home Italia (Pty) LTD, where his leadership has been pivotal in steering the company towards success.

Beyond his business ventures, Rasheed is deeply involved in addressing some of South Africa’s most pressing issues, such as unemployment, poverty, and inequality. He has authored numerous articles and has engaged directly with various government ministries and even the President, proposing innovative solutions for economic revitalization.

Rasheed’s commitment to societal improvement has propelled him into the political arena.

He is a parliamentary candidate for the 2024 National Government elections, representing the Sizwe Ummah Nation party.

His extensive experience and genuine desire for effecting positive change make him a promising figure in South African politics.
Gutta is also number 1 candidate in the Gauteng Legislature list.

Sizwe Ummah Nation was established in April 2015.

1. Mr Gutta you have developed an acute sense of international and local economics. How so?

ANSWER: I was importing furniture from China since 2000 and regularly travelled to that country.

I watched how it grew economically in 25 years; something that took Europe 200 years to do.

China achieved this by simply following the model of Industrialisation and Exports that other developed countries followed.

During the same time I watched how South Africa initially grew in the first 15 years after the dawn of democracy and watched in horror as it slid in the last 15 wasted years to such an extent that it exacerbated inequality, unemployment and poverty in South Africa to become worse than what I had experienced during the days of apartheid.

I watched how policies implemented by the current government resulted in deindustrialisation and closure of many factories in South Africa, where we now import most finished products rather than producing them.

2. How have you in your own way tried to address pressing issues such as unemployment?

ANSWER: In 2016 I decided to convert my import furniture business into a local manufacturing entity where I began to produce previously imported goods locally at a cheaper price, thereby creating much-needed jobs for almost 1000 people when the business was at its peak.

3. What innovative solutions have you proposed to President Ramaphosa regarding economic revitilisation in the country?

ANSWER: In 2018 I personally handed a blueprint solution to the President proposing a tried and tested formula to solving South Africa’s current pandemic of unemployment, inequality, and poverty.

Unfortunately, I never received a response from his office and had to watch as the country deteriorated further in during his term of office as the President.

I was very motivated in 2019 by the President’s call to action: Thuma Mina and The New Dawn. Sadly, these have literally faded into the sunset.

4. Why have you decided to establish your own party and run for the presidency of the country?

ANSWER: I actually joined an existing party called Sizwe Ummah Nation (SUN), that was principled on the return to God consciousness and transforming the country into a more socially just and equitable society where every one would have dignity through access to food, security, jobs and housing.

I have been sent by the SUN party as the No.1 candidate to Parliament to make the party’s vision a reality due to my experience in business and implementing the tried and tested Economic Growth Model that I proposed to the government.

5. Have you always been politically-inclined or your interest in politics has just developed recently?

ANSWER: I have come to the conclusion that politics is too serious a matter to be left to the current politicians and there is no Messiah out there who is going to save this country.

I was forced to close my factory last year due to loadshedding and the continued worsening of the economy and decided to raise my hand so that I can serve my country and try to save it from becoming a failed state.

6. Were you a member of any other political party in the past?

ANSWER: No, but I have engaged extensively with the ruling ANC party and going to their policy conference as well as their elective conference in 2022.

I then came to the realization that the party is too fractured and factionalized to renew itself.

In 2023 I started relying on on other parties to carry my message and proposed solutions forward, but soon realised that it would be best to go to Parliament myself instead of outsourcing this responsibility.

7. How do you aim to improve the quality of education in the country especially for the previously marginalized citizens?

ANSWER: I want to replicate the successful tried and tested model implemented by Australia, whereby from the age of 6 weeks the infant is taken care of by highly-regulated child care centres until they finally graduate from university.

The child’s education is subsided by the government and when the child starts working as an adult, they contribute back into the government system that supported them throughout the years in the form of taxes based on their income.

So, everyone has equal access to education even though their parents might not be in a high income bracket.

8. Should the tender system of procuring goods for the public be abolished by the government as it apparently brings about corruption and conflict among those involved in the said tender processes?

ANSWER: We should return to the Centralized Tender Board process that was implemented in 1994 with the advent of democracy, but was abolished later and decentralized to the various government departments where all procurement processes are currently abused and compromised.

The Centralized Tender Board processes must then be transparent and independent.

9. What is your view on the often bandied policy of land expropriation without compensation?

ANSWER: The Free Market Foundation did a study that found that there are 7 to 10 million pieces of land where houses are built and occupied by South African citizens but they do not owe the land as such land is still owned by the government.

Through a private initiative implemented a few years ago, 10 000 erfs were transferred to the home owners with a title deed that cost only R2000 at the time.

So this is the low-hanging fruit that our party Sizwe Ummah Nation will prioritise if voted into Parliament.

There is no real need to expropriate without compensation.

Even the EFF who branded this concept have watered it down in their recent manifesto.

10. Your solution regarding the issue of illegal foreigners?

ANSWER: illegal foreigners must be deported back to their original countries. We should only retain those among them who have the rate skills needed to contribute to the redevelopment of our country and make them naturalized citizens.

11. Once in Parliament will you enter into coalition agreements with other parties even though coalition arrangements seem to have failed at municipal level?

ANSWER: I believe we should not enter into full coalition agreements. We should instead adopt a nuanced approach whereby we coalesce on selected issues with parties that share common principles with us on the specific issues at hand, because no part offers complete solutions on every aspect.

12. Don’t you think political parties contesting the 2024 general elections are a bit too many? Or do you maybe subscribe to the school of thought which holds that ” the more the better?”

ANSWER: It is very exciting to see that individuals in our country have lifted their hands to serve their country as the ruling party has failed the nation after 30 years of democracy. There are now many diverse people and solutions to contribute to positive change in this country.

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